By Jo Mathis
AAPS District News Editor
Twenty Huron High School students are now published authors upon the release of their anthology of bedtime stories titled, “A Lantern of Fireflies: An Illustrated Treasury of Tales of Adventure, Discovery, and Magic.”
The nonprofit creative writing center 826michigan partnered with Sarah Andrew-Vaughan’s academic literacy class at Huron High School in the fall to create the book, which was illustrated by nationally known artists who donated their work.
Volunteers from 826michigan came to Huron twice a week the first semester to help students with their writing, while others went to Mitchell Elementary to help younger writers.
The academic literacy students wrote a bedtime story for children, which they read to Mitchell second graders, who offered feedback back in October.
The teen authors then met again recently with the Mitchell students for the book unveiling, student readings, book signing, and a pizza lunch.
Alexus Phelan, who’ll be a junior next year at Huron, read the story she wrote based on her little sister Xyla.
Her advice to other would-be writers?
“You want to be confident in what you write,” said Alexus. “Sometimes I’d be thinking, `Oh, this story isn’t good enough.’ You have to think of stuff that will make it better, work hard, and believe that you can make it work. Be confident.”
Alexus said that while she didn’t initially think she needed to be in the class, she’s glad she was.
“It helped me progress into being a better writer,” she said.
Amanda Uhle, executive director of 826michigan, explained that she never gets tired of seeing teens see their name in print as published authors for the first time.
“It’s exhilarating to see,” she said.